Characterization of maximally random jammed sphere packings. I. Voronoi correlation functions

In this paper, we characterize the local and global structure of maximally random jammed sphere packings.

MRJ sphere packing: (left) only the spheres, (right) spheres and Voronoi cells

M. A. Klatt and S. Torquato. Characterization of Maximally Random Jammed Sphere Packings: Voronoi Correlation Functions. Phys. Rev. E, 90:052120-1–12 (2014)

We characterize the structure of the maximally disordered packing among the set of all packings of monodisperse frictionless hard spheres, the so-called maximally random jammed (MRJ) sphere packing. Therefore, we compute the Minkowski functionals of the associated Voronoi cells and compare the structure to that of the Poisson point process (ideal gas) and of an equilibrium hard-sphere liquid.

In particular, we consider correlation functions or probability density functions of these Voronoi characteristics. Here we introduce and compute correlation functions and probability density functions of Minkowski functionals to quantify the global structure of the Voronoi diagram.

The local analysis using the distribution of the Voronoi volumes finds no qualitative difference for the structure of liquid or random jammed hard-sphere packings. In contrast to this, the higher-order statistical descriptors introduced here qualitatively distinguish the Voronoi structure of the MRJ sphere packings (prototypical glasses) from that of a hard-sphere liquid. We find strong anti-correlations in the MRJ sphere packings that arise because the MRJ state is “hyperuniform”.


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